- Paperback: 432 pages
- Publisher: Greenwillow Books; Reprint edition (June 12, 2007)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0060835796
- ISBN-13: 978-0060835798
- Product Dimensions: 5.1 x 0.9 x 7.6 inches
- Shipping Weight: 12.8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars See all reviews (165 customer reviews)
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #89,027 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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The King of Attolia (The Queen's Thief, Book 3) Paperback – June 12, 2007
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From School Library Journal
Starred Review. Grade 7 Up–Fans whove been waiting for six long years for the sequel to The Queen of Attolia (2000) and The Thief (1996, both HarperCollins) can finally rejoice. Eugenides, the former Thief of Eddis, is back and just as clever as ever. As King of Attolia after literally stealing and marrying the Queen, he must convince the rest of her court and her subjects that he deserves his title. The Attolians think hes an idiot whos being used by the Queen. They refuse to believe that he and Irene could honestly love one another, considering that shes responsible for having his hand cut off. His attendants and guards mock him behind his back and play pranks on him, all the while thinking that hes too spineless and incompetent to protest. That is, until a guard named Costis punches him in the face and knocks him down. Beheading is the usual penalty for such a transgression but Eugenides devises a better punishment. It is through Costiss eyes that readers see how he and the court consistently underestimate the shrewd young man. This third book in the series continues to involve political intrigue, espionage, and attempted assassination but is less concerned with the fighting between kingdoms that dominated the previous book. Instead, it explores the complex and very romantic relationship between the monarchs. Although it does stand alone, to appreciate the amazingly charismatic and beguiling character of Eugenides fully, its best to read the titles in order.–Sharon Rawlins, NJ Library for the Blind and Handicapped, Trenton
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
Gr. 8-11. Fans of the irascible Thief of Eddis will recall that Gen and his frosty nemesis, Attolia, exchanged vows of love in The Queen of Attolia (2000). This second follow-up to Turner's 1997 Newbery Honor Book, The Thief, follows the turbulent months just after their union, primarily from the perspective of Gen's reluctant personal assistant, Costis, who despises the "goat-footed throne-stealing interloper" as much as the rest of Attolia's insubordinate court. Gradually, though, Costis gleans that there is more to King Gen than his oafish, irascible behavior would suggest. Turner's wide-ranging, third-person narrative tantalizingly limits readers' access to Gen, leaving readers to sift truth from Gen-masterminded subterfuge and to weigh his detractors' prejudices undiluted. The challenge of internalizing so many new characters may halt some readers, and many will mourn the replacement of concrete, action-oriented exploits with this situation's more subtle courtly and diplomatic stratagems. Staunch fans of Turner's roguish hero, particularly those who enjoyed the middle-grade-friendly Thief several years ago and whose reading capabilities have ripened, will reap the greatest rewards here. Jennifer Mattson
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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Top Customer Reviews
Megan Whalen Turner writes well, but her style will never be described as poetic or lush. Instead, her prose is matter of fact and to the point, describing settings without trailing on forever, and capturing moods skillfully. She excels at writing believable, humorous dialogue; some of it was so funny that I found myself laughing out loud.
Ms. Turner's plots and characters are what make her books so wonderful. Just as the plot of 'The Queen of Attolia' was very different from the plot of 'The Thief', 'The King of Attolia' possesses new themes and characters, while continuing the main storyline. I have noticed that Ms. Turner is distancing herself from Eugenides with each book: 'The Thief' was from his point of view, 'The Queen of Attolia' was third-person, but often from his point of view, and 'The King of Attolia' is third-person, but from the point of view of his guard, Costis, who is in nearly every scene. This technique makes sense. In 'The King of Attolia', Eugenides is a married man, and deserves some privacy.
The book mainly focuses on how Eugendies is perceived by the Attolians. Nearly all of them despise him. They love their queen, and they think that Eugenides is an undignified, unkingly idiot, who has humiliated Attolia by marrying her. Attolia wants Eugenides to step into his position of kingship, but Eugenides never wanted to be king, only to marry her, and he is digging in his heels and resisting her every effort. His attendents hate him, he is homesick, and, being Eugenides, he hasn't a chance of getting through the entire book (or even the first half of the book) physically and emotionally unscathed.
Most of the story lines are neatly tied up by the end, but, I must warn you, some of them are left dangling, and I am already panting for another installment in the series. I appreciate the way Ms. Turner takes the time to think up unique plots for each of her books, so I will try to wait patiently, but it's already difficult.
I love Ms. Turner's books the most because of the characters.
Costis is interesting and conflicted, but nothing like Eugenides. Though he is in nearly every scene, he is by no means the main character. He serves as the witness through whose eyes the reader views the real main characters: Eugenides and Attolia. He sees more of their private life than most people, but we can only guess at what happens between the two of them when he is not watching. (Intriguing hints about their wedding night are sprinkled here and there, but nothing inappropriate for younger teens/adolescents.)
Eugenides has matured a lot (and suffered a lot) since he first appeared in 'The Thief', but he remains the same marvelous, incorrigible, dangerous young man. His relationship with Attolia is fascinating. He loves her, but she frightens him; she loves him, but he frightens her. They are a surprisingly well-matched couple, and Ms. Turner protrays their complicated relationship beautifully. It's strange, unfathomable, and believable.
I love Eugenides, but I love Attolia as well, and I really enjoyed the closer look at her. She is no spunky warrior queen of fantasy fiction. She is both feminine and tough, and can be both gentle and ruthless. It's what makes her frightening, but it's also a wonderful combination for female character. In no other book have I encountered a woman quite like her. She would do absolutely anything for her country, and most of her people would do absolutely anything for her. She too develops in surprising ways throughout the book, becoming even more human and accessible than she did in 'The Queen of Attolia'. She continues to have a rather unique sense of humor, and threatening Eugenides with bodily harm is (usually) her way of making a joke.
Also, the court of Attolia is very, very different from the court of Eddis, and that was another factor I enjoyed in this book. Attolia and Eddis are both wonderful women, but they rule their kingdoms in completely different ways. If you liked Eddis striding around in trousers, being practical and understated, then you will almost certainly like Attolia sweeping through the halls in beautiful gowns, striking terror into the hearts of her subjects.
To my slight disappointment, Eddis and the magus are only in two scenes, and the minister of war does not appear at all (though he is occasionally discussed). The ambassador of the Mede plays an important role in the story, but does not interact with anyone. Other characters take their places. Teleus, Relius, and Ornon are three secondary characters from earlier books who become complicated and interesting people in their own right.
As soon as I finished 'The King of Attolia', I had to go back to reread my favorite scenes, and there were many. This book is excellent, and I eagerly await more!
Well, me of little faith. The King of Attolia is even better -- so much so that it felt like a series of little gifts, each more surprising and wondrous and heart-stopping than the next. Turner is now neck-and-neck with Diana Wynne Jones as my favorite writer ever. This book is unbelievably great, and in it, Eugenides becomes a character for the ages, and not just in YA fiction. I don't know if Turner plans to tell more of his story (and Attolia's, and Eddis's, and that of the wonderful Costis), but I wish she would! I want to know if Eugenides fulfills Teleus' prediction -- and I want to know about his and Attolia's children! Surely this is the mark of a great series -- leaving the reader wanting - no, craving -- to know more.
In 'the Thief', Gen was a witty, nimble thief, always on his toes and ready with a comeback. It seemed nothing could bring his wit or cleverness down.
In 'the Queen of Attolia', Gen lost his right hand, then stole the Queen of Attolia.
Now he is married to her, and has become the King of Attolia. But the troubles are far from over for our clever thief. Made ruler of a land whose people don't trust him, and a court who thinks of him as a joke, Eugenides must face the ambition of the barons, the treachery of the court, the 'harmless' tricks of his attendants, and all those who regard him with disdain, without his friends behind him. He's all alone in the bloodsucking court, with a wife who, in the minds of her people, only married him because she was forced to.
Although the book continues the adventures of the former Thief of Eddis, it focuses mainly on one member of the guard, Costis. In a moment of anger Costis knocks Eugenides over with a punch, putting the squad leader's life at stake. But the king visits him while he's thinking over his fate, and some time later Costis finds himself, relieved of his position, but still alive. Costis is later made a lieutenant of the king's personal guard, an action many regard bitterly. He thinks of it as the king's personal joke, but he may soon realize Eugenides is far from laughing.
Although Costis shares his comrades' opinions about the king, he who stole their queen and couldn't rule to save his life, he finds himself gradually realizing he's been underestimating the clever thief.
'The Thief' was also a children's book; Queen of Attolia left that behind with a spectacular flare of political manipulation plus action; and now King of Attolia sneaks up from behind to offer a clever twist of court intrigue and drama that is exciting as well as enthralling to read. With adequate (but not elongated) descriptions and interesting dialogue, it doesn't get boring and is hard to put down.
This may not be for young children to read, holding some mildly offensive language etc., but I did manage to read it to my 10-year-old sister with relative ease.
I'm not sure, but King of Attolia very well could be better than the two before it, and it definitely ranks high in my list of the best books in the world.
It was worth the long wait, and we can only hope that this will not be the last book Megan Whalen Turner writes about our friend, the King of Attolia.